My little man has been eating his wormies all by himself! His foster mum has been working really hard with him and its showing! He’s getting much more confident and his eating is improving like there is no tomorrow. He’s even hunting the worms himself and doesn’t need them cut up anymore – He’s gonna come back looking like Rambo!

yay! Its the healing power of noms <3

A Little Update


Phoebe is in her foster home and is behaving like she is gravid again. This may mean more eggies soon! If she does lay, these will be summer babies – an ideal time for them to hatch due to all the lovely wild plants and flowers around! I am however having a small panic attack because i can’t be there when she does lay.

George is in his foster home and is eating fantastically. He’s literally running over to his feeding slate each morning, actually eating his wild plants/flowers and improving so much. He’s also wanting to be out to play at 5am every day and is doing his poor foster mums head in!


oh man, I can’t imagine how hard it is to think you can’t be there when she lays! Glad to see they’re doing well, though! Shell-hugs! 

(Image: Zoya Pants  Article Via )

Some important facts for beginner turtle, tortoise, and terrapin fans.

Well, we’ve all heard the tale about the hare and tortoise. But did you know these 7 interesting facts about turtles?

1. Are tortoises and turtles the same thing? And we’re not talking ninja turtles here.

All tortoises are turtles; however, all turtles are not tortoises. Tortoises are the turtles that live on the land.

2. It was over 200 million years ago that the earliest turtles had evolved.

3. There are around 320 species of turtles all around the world and almost half of them fall into the endangered range.

4. When in Britain, remember that the term turtle is used for salt water species, while the term terrapin is used for the fresh water species.

5. Don’t be afraid of a turtle biting your head off- they have no teeth.

6. The official reptile of Illinois state is the painted turtle. This decision was made through an internet poll, and other options which people had voted for were the Eastern Box Turtle and the Common Garter Snake.

7. Although yawning is said to be contagious in both humans and animals, research suggests that in tortoises yawning is not contagious.

Zoya is climbing out of her enclosure to give her humom a snuggle and apologize to you all for the late responses to asks. Humom is so silly and wants to respond in detail, but its not happing on time cause she has had a really rough week. As usual, it takes a wise and agile shell to set her straight. 

She’s drawn up some enclosure schematics and promises to get posting them as soon as she gets a good night sleep (hopefully in her bed and not on the couch, cause she snores, and this spidey shell needs her beauty rest! Best guess on timing is tomorrow or Wednesday… she’s like a tortoise stereotype „, so slow. gaw. ) 

Oh, and she says thanks to all who send aks and submissions. They make Tort-time extra awesome. 


hey! I have a russian tortoise and I am going to have a small bird soon, I was wondering if you know if it is safe to keep them in the same room? I’m having trouble finding out via google search.

Hey! Congrats on your growing animal family 🙂

I’m assuming they’ll have separate enclosures? If that’s the case I don’t see too much opportunity for trouble to be made when they’re both in their individual secure spaces. 

The problems come in when the bird is out of its enclosure and able to fly around, roam free. You’ve got a heat lamp that can burn, be knocked over and hurt your tortoise, and even start a fire. That’s the *biggest* issue I can forsee.  Well that and your bird trying to get a ride out of the tortoise taxi and earning a side eye 🙂 I’d bet you won’t get more than an annoyed side eye from your Russian. The new bird isn’t a nom and isn’t something recognizable as nom related, so clearly tortie has better things to think about 😉  

I did some searching before responding to you as I’m not a bird expert (or any expert really), and I did read a bit about the potential for a bird to pick up bacteria (that are are carried by tortoises but not an issue for them) and falling ill. Nothing that gave any cited info just a couple people mentioning it. Definitely something to think about before letting them interact at all. 

So, now comes the time where I’ve babbled far beyond my limited knowledge and ask kindly if anyone else has any thoughts??



Hilda Update

Poor hilda took a turn for the worst and her rescuer rushed her to the vet. They had to sedate her in order to do an examination, X-Rays and take bloods, as well as possibly fit a feeding tube. The vet managed to get a bit of blood but it looked odd and gaseous – results showred she had liver impairment and in the end was unable to recover the anaesthetic. Unfortunately for Hilda it was all too late and she didn’t make it. 

But she’s no longer suffering, free of pain and was at least given one day with a lamp to warm her back and someone who cared enough to try.

I’m so sorry to hear she didn’t make but you’re right.. she’s not suffering. She’s suffered enough already. Hopefully she will help teach others with her legacy. :s



Sea Turtles Smell Nearby Shores

by Cameron Walker

A loggerhead sea turtle’s nose knows land. Sea turtles can migrate across the ocean and back, but while Earth’s magnetic field plays a role in their navigation, researchers have wondered what other tools turtles use to find safe harbor, particularly at smaller scales.

Loggerheads’ (Caretta caretta) olfactory systems can sense airborne odors, including food—could they sniff out nearby shores as well? To find out, researchers piped the scent of either distilled water or mud from North Carolina’s Sage Bay into the air above a juvenile loggerhead at swim in an arena.

Researchers report in this month’s issue of Marine Biology that when the scent of mud was in the air, the 10 turtles spent more time swimming with their heads above the water’s surface, compared with when distilled water was the only perfume…

(read more: Science News/AAAS)

photo: Courtney Endres

Submitted by teenagegodmomma :

Hi! I was recently given this little dude and I need soooo much help.

I don’t know what he is to begin with. 

I also need to know what to feed him, what to house him in, what the bedding should be, what kind of light to buy, how much light he needs and pretty much anything else I would need to know to care for this tiny guy. 

Right now he is in a hamster cage that is about a foot on all sides and he has a water dish that is big enough for him to soak in (he spends maybe 30 mins every day just chiling in it). It has clay in it and some rocks that he climbs on. I feed him worms that I buy from Walmart. I have just a regular lamp on him when I’m home.

I know this isn’t a good set up but I wasn’t planning on adopting a little friend and I really need some help!

If you could please email me with some advice at I would really appreciate it! 

Hey there! So I did some asking around and thanks to @oceanshamen ‘s help it seems like you’ve got a young Chinese Golden Thread (striped neck) turtle hatchling. They aren’t native, but have been found a lot in Florida.  A pond loving turtle that enjoys basking, so a pond/tank, basking platform, and some good UVB/UVA lighting is needed.  Can’t be sure, not seeing him/her in person and not being a vet. I’d say if you acquired him/her you’ll probably want to take a trip to a vet that specializes in exotics to ensure he/she is healthy, parasite free, and verify the set up. 

Anyone else have thoughts?? Answers enabled! 

From Western Mass. Turtle Rescue:

SCIENTIFIC NAME Ocadia sinensis

ADULT SIZE  Male   6” – 8”            Female   10” – 12”


An omnivorous turtle, but hatchlings and males tend to be more carnivorous feeding on insects, larvae, worms, crustaceans, and carrion, but will take in variety of water vegetation.

Females and older turtles will be primarily herbivorous.


Air Temperature:  Low to mid 80s F

Basking Temperature:  Mid 80s F to mid 90s F

Water Temperature: Mid 70s F to mid 80s F

Captive-bred specimens usually acclimate readily to proper enclosures and be fairly parasite-free. Imported wild-caught Chinese Golden Threads require deparasitization which may be outside the newcomer’s experience or desire and must consult a reptile veterinarian


An enthusiastic basking turtle that often spends most of the day basking. A heat lamp and UVB light source are essential. A submersible heater is recommended, but they can withstand cool temperatures when kept in an outdoor pond. It is recommended that they be over-wintered indoors. Some specimens may hibernate as well, but it is not recommended.


For adult males, a minimum 55 gallon tank or larger, while females should have at least a 75 gallon tank. They are reasonably good swimmers and the water should be fairly deep, albeit with driftwood or other ‘tank furniture’ to provide resting areas near the surface. Ocadia sinensis are excellent turtles for ponds habitats and easy to care for


Hatchlings will feed on insects, worms, dried shrimp, dried fish, turtle/fish pellets and water vegetation. Adults tend to be more herbivorous and will take in Anacharis, water lettuce, duckweed, other aquatic plants and varied leafy greens such as dandelions, romaine lettuce, kale, collards greens and etc. Always keep leafy greens or aquatic vegetation in the tank and feed turtle pellets sparingly two or three times a week to adults.


A hardy turtle and a prolific breeder. However, many imported wild-caught specimens have nicks and pitting from shell rot and/or fungus. Due to the stresses of transit in bad conditions, wild-caught turtles may arrive dehydrated and stressed, making examining the prospective purchase or dealing with a trusted vendor necessary. Deparasitization is a must for wild-caught Chinese Golden Threads, while captive bred specimens are fairly easy to care for similarly to other basking species (cooters, sliders and painted turtles). However, mixing species from distant geographical regions is discouraged since it will increase the likelihood of exposing new diseases.

Hatchlings are highly attractive with light grey/green carapace and orange/yellow discontinuous stripes on the three keels. The striking long-tailed hatchlings, are active and popular pet turtles in Asia comparable to the popularity and availability of the Red Eared Slider (RES) of North America.

Even more info here on the World Chelonian Trust site